Mrs. Thatcher, Document Snatcher

Backwards in Britain

churchill-grandson.jpg I got mine!

The Churchill family cashing in threatens to set the United Kingdom on the path to more presidentialism: cults of personality, motorcades, and our gift to the world, the presidential library.

History News Network reports they aren’t there yet, but are plugging away.

Britain has a functioning National Archives, but that can’t stop the empire builders. The Churchill papers were bought back from the family with public money, and rest at the Cambridge college named for him. Margaret Thatcher is tagging along there, but appears to be thin on actual material.

thatcher-milk-snatcher.jpgHer archive head says “What we have here …are the private letters to Baroness Thatcher from members of Parliament, copies of official letters that she was allowed to take with her and much more.”

The Thatcher web site illustrates the redundant nature of the enterprise:

“MT’s own collection includes copies of most of the White House material relating to her meetings with successive Presidents. Gaps in her collection have been filled, in some cases, from the Carter and Reagan Library photographic collections. Bush material will be placed on line with documentary material in early 2006.”

A search in multimedia for “Reagan” gets you nothing but White House photos. There are some bugs to work out on the site itself. Even the link to the Churchill archives is a bust.

The Churchill site is more fun, including Churchill’s memorandum calling for poison gassing Bolshevik troops during the British intervention in Russia’s Civil War.churchill-poisen-gas-russia.jpg

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